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Homeowner, 29, gets on property ladder with share of £210,000 London flat (with help from Bank of Mum and Dad) but is still jealous of her friends who rent
- Kylie Petitt bought 30 per cent of her home in Woolwich, south east London
- Her parents lent her £6,300 for the deposit of her flat in a leaseholder building
- Although she ultimately thinks buying is better, she misses flexibility of renting
Charity worker Kylie Petitt bought her one-bed flat in Woolwich, south east London, for £210,000 two years ago through a shared ownership scheme – but now she says she misses the flexibility of renting
A 29-year-old homeowner has said she is jealous of her friends who rent because she misses the ‘flexibility and freedom’.
Charity worker Kylie Petitt bought her one-bed flat in Woolwich, south east London, for £210,000 two years ago through a shared ownership scheme after her parents lent her £6,300 for the deposit.
She now owns 30 per cent of the property in the leaseholder building – which means she has to pay a monthly fee to the freeholder for communal area maintenance and admin.
Despite finding herself in the 27 per cent of middle-income adults between 25 and 34 to own her own home, she now says she misses the flexibility of renting after becoming unsure if she wants to remain in London.
Ms Petitt told the Sun: ‘I’m at a turning point in my life and I’m not even sure if I want to stay in London, but it would be totally stupid to sell my flat now – so I feel a bit stuck for the next few years.
‘As a shared owner, I also can’t just rent it out and move back in later, which rules out any dreams of travelling, like some of my renting friends are now doing.
‘I feel very lucky about owning my home but I do sometimes get jealous over the flexibility of renting.’
To save up for the £2,500 solicitor, broker and mortgage fees, and cash to decorate the flat, Ms Petitt skipped meals out, and decided not to buy new clothes.
Even now she still finds herself scrimping and saving to make sure she can afford any emergency fixes to the flat – like when her windows cracked because of building work next door.
She added: ‘It’s pretty tough being on my own and sorting out things like that instead of having a landlord to ring up for help – although I know not all landlords are that helpful anyway!’
The 29-year-old said: ‘I feel very lucky about owning my home but I do sometimes get jealous over the flexibility of renting’
Despite the drawbacks of paying £80 a month to the freeholder for maintenance, Ms Petitt still thinks overall buying is better than renting.
She said: ‘I see renting friends who need to move because their landlord decides to sell up or raise the rent and it makes me feel lucky about the fact that I’m secure here.
‘I’ve also loved being able to put my own flair on the place for the first time ever. The financial and freedom sacrifices are worth being able to come home and call it mine.’
How does shared ownership work?
Homeowners buying a house through the scheme buy 25 per cent to 75 per cent of the property’s value and pay rent on the rest to a housing association, as well as a service charge.
After a certain period of time living in a house, you can choose to buy a bigger share – a process known as ‘staircasing’.
If you end up owning 100 per cent of the property, you will no longer have to pay rent, but the service charge to the housing association will continue.
Once you own 100 per cent of the property, you will be able to sell the house without having to allow the housing association to sell it for you. Before that, you must give them six to eight weeks to find a buyer before you are allowed to look around yourself.
The scheme has been around for decades and was previously known as ‘Part Buy and Part Rent’, but has become particularly popular in recent years after getting on to the housing ladder became out of reach for many.
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